2013 Volume 63 Issue 4 Pages 435-440
A glutathione S-transferase-like gene, DcGSTF2, is responsible for carnation (Dianthus caryophyllus L.) flower color intensity. Two defective genes, DcGSTF2mu with a nonsense mutation and DcGSTF2-dTac1 containing a transposable element dTac1, have been characterized in detail in this report. dTac1 is an active element that produces reverted functional genes by excision of the element. A pale-pink cultivar ‘Daisy’ carries both defective genes, whereas a spontaneous deep-colored mutant ‘Daisy-VPR’ lost the element from DcGSTF2-dTac1. This finding confirmed that dTac1 is active and that the resulting reverted gene, DcGSTF2rev1, missing the element is responsible for this color change. Crosses between the pale-colored cultivar ‘06-LA’ and a deep-colored cultivar ‘Spectrum’ produced segregating progeny. Only the deep-colored progeny had DcGSTF2rev2 derived from the ‘Spectrum’ parent, whereas progeny with pale-colored flowers had defective forms from both parents, DcGSTF2mu and DcGSTF2-dTac1. Thus, DcGSTF2rev2 had functional activity and likely originated from excision of dTac1 since there was a footprint sequence at the vacated site of the dTac1 insertion. Characterizing the DcGSTF2 genes in several cultivars revealed that the two functional genes, DcGSTF2rev1 and DcGSTF2rev2, have been used for some time in carnation breeding with the latter in use for more than half a century.